“For me, the difference is as follows:The connection you are trying to elicit from your audience, and how you want them to interpret them to interpret, remember, and digest.”
Hello there! This is a message to all beings beyond Earth’s hemisphere. Yes, you extraterrestrial beings that seem to be such a part of our culture. On behalf of the staff of Seven, I would like to extend an invitation to you to visit the United States. Earth is large and beautiful with many locations appeasing the eye. However, none has the diversity and intensity as the United States. You already knew that though. Because, the United States is “the only country UFO’s ever seem to land in.” (Reference Monsters vs. Aliens movie). We have a rich history and an even richer landscape. We are sure you will find something to your liking. Unless you are carnivores and Humans are to your liking or like the prospect of world domination, then please stop reading, this message is NOT for you. Other friendly and non-threatening beings, please read on.
Our government does look kindly on foreigners. We are a country full of immigrants. Don’t be turned off by a weird glance or a multitude of people all wearing black and pointing a gun in your direction. I’ll be honest, we humans tend to fear the unknown. However, I would like to share with you some of our history as history has the tendency to repeat itself. This may serve to help you on your initial visit.
On the initial discovery of America, the Europeans came to explore and check out this new land. They were amazed by all that America had to offer. The Native’s were a bit hostile at first because they had no clue who these visitors were. The Europeans were smart though. They won over the Natives by bearing gifts. What did they bring? They gave gifts that were novelties to them, trinkets and other little marvels. Things the Natives had never seen before. The point of this first example is: bring gifts. Everyone enjoys presents. Don’t be rude!
Have I mentioned how amazingly diverse our nation is? It is easy to find people of all races and cultures here. But the awesomeness that I’m getting to is food! A diverse nation means there are restaurants to cater to these people. In big cities like New York you can find Italian, Spanish, Thai, Chinese, Japanese, French, Indian and food from just about every country in the matter of miles. What this means is that we are sure we can find something that can persuade your palate. If you’re in the mood for some good ole American food not only will you find an excess of fast food restaurants, but also the delicious BBQ in Texas and Tennessee to the unique squirrels in West Virginia, there is something out there for you. Eat our food! Not our people.
American history is something that is very rich and unique to us and you can travel to so many places within our borders to experience it. Museums for example do an excellent job of preserving bits and pieces of our history and tend to be very educational experiences. Then there are places like Virginia that host Battle Reenactments mostly centered around the Civil War. These are experiences you are not likey to forget. Not only are they filled with the actions of war, but you can safely experience it by getting front row seats! Do me a favor though, don’t take notes while you watch and explore. Humans might think your taking notes and pictures to plot against us.
Furthermore, our landscapes are truly a beauty to behold. From the sandy beaches in Miami, to the breathtaking skyline of New York, to the expansive deserts in the Southwest, to the awe inspiring mountains in Colorado, to the beautiful islands of Hawaii. You see, our land is just as diverse as our people and our food. There is so much beauty to see.
Begin with a plan. By plan, I don’t mean itinerary. Although arriving with a general idea of the landmarks you would like to visit is a good idea. Be sure that list is flexible. Pick one place and let it lead you to the next. However, let’s be honest. Although all humans tend to fear the unknown, Americans tend to be a bit more territorial. And when it comes from the government, while they might say one thing to you, what they most likely mean this:
Photo Credit: mod db
OK, I have to be honest. Our government does an excellent job on alien cover ups. You see, we’re pretty sure your brethren have visited at one point or another. I know this because there have been thousands of eyewitnesses to some form of UFO experience and even government and military personnel have spoken out on the matter. While our government usually doesn’t confirm or deny this, they do a great job of continuing to denying it. Believers sure take that as a confirmation. If eye witnesses weren’t enough to convince people, there is also Area 51. An Air Force base that is located on the southern portion of Nevada which is surrounded by a shroud of mystery, conspiracy and CIA involvement. Many Americans believe that UFOs are in some part the cause of that mystery. To read more up on that click here. The point I hope to arrive to, with all of this. is that you must be careful. Coming here with an unknown fate might be exciting but should also be cause for fear. If you come, be sure to have fun, but be wary of all humans. They have guns.
For the none English speaking beings, this part is for you:
Phot Credit: NASA
Okay… I actually have no clue what that says. So um… Sick to the English text written above. Consider visiting our beautiful country. Stay safe and please come in peace!
Ymelda Ramirez contributed to this article. =)
© 2013 Seven Magazine
Welcome to The Pen Bleeds where poetry is more than rhyme, more than reason, more than words flowing with rhythm; it’s a combination of jagged thoughts, feelings, actions, and a unique language opening minds to see the world from a different perspective.
This Month’s Featured Poet: Sean Burton
It’s a pleasure featuring Sean Burton, a poet who delves into those caliginous places; the eerie ones where hell equates to being overtaken by a succubus while the body is at rest. His writing demonstrates a side of poetry that is more than love sonnets dressed in niceties making the heart flutter. Instead, it exhibits an intense and chaotic shadowy side, which intentionally preys on the fears of the living. Do you dare to embrace the darkness in all those dreadful crevices? We posed seven questions to better familiarize our readers with his creative vision and intellect.
Q&A with Sean Burton
Seven: What is your favorite genre of literature to write about?
Sean Burton: I really get into the darker side of writing. The macabre, taboo, and sins. That sort of thing.
Seven: What inspires you to write?
Sean Burton: My poetry is usually associated directly with whatever mental state I am in. If I have a feeling of heartache, fear, lust or anxiety I write. I find this better because the words literally just flow and there’s no thought process to it until it comes to editing/proof reading.
Seven: Who is your favorite author and how do they inspire you?
Sean Burton: I’m a huge Lovecraft fan. He is undoubtedly a linguistic genius. He has this way with words that just drives my imagination to insanity and when I read it, it just becomes sudden inspiration.
Seven: Are your writings primarily nonfiction, fiction, or a mixture of both?
Sean Burton: Both actually. The nightmare pieces are nonfiction. The poetry comes roughly half and half but a real life experience rooted them.
Seven: Do you have any advice for writers who want to improve their craft?
Sean Burton: Always keep something to write with nearby. I can’t tell you how much I hate being struck with inspiration and I don’t write anything. It never comes out nearly as good. The reader can feel your inspiration and passion through your words and as always, keep writing. Never stop.
Seven: Can you write on command about any topic or is writing more spiritual for you?
Sean Burton: Both. I write for a few fitness magazines locally so I’m often asked to write on a timeline and I blog about both fitness and my personal writings. Needless to say, I get a lot of practice.
Seven: What are your views on freedom of speech and why do you feel “The Great American Boy” is a prime example of standing up for ones beliefs?
Sean Burton: Freedom of speech is something I feel everyone cherishes, yet very few take advantage of due to repercussion or criticism. Imagine not having it for a second. It’s the essence of where we are as a nation and men and women have died for it. He who possesses the will to stand against the masses for a belief they cherish, and let it be known, has the same will our founding fathers possessed.
Sean Burton is a resident of San Antonio, Texas, who is a freelance self employed personal trainer, poet, writer, blogger, and jack of all trades. He staunchly opposes mediocrity and conformity; he has a unique style all his own. Everything he does is fueled by passion, fortified by knowledge and carried by faith.
For more information on Sean Burton please visit:
Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us.
-Justice William O. Douglas
Freedom of expression is the single most important right all humans should be privy to. Unfortunately, not all governments allow this right and even in the United States it is limited.
A true democratic society supports an environment where its citizens are free to voice their opinions and ideas openly without prejudice or punishment. I believe in fostering a populace of brave free thinking people; people who not only embrace dissenting viewpoints, but also challenge any system of beliefs, government, or set of actions that may clash with their own.
Only the brave or free thinking are willing to go against the status quo, being willing to speak up and take action on behalf of the community and the world. These individuals raise the bar and lead by example. One of the greatest proponents of free speech was free-thinker, essayist, scholar and social activist W.E.B Dubois. He challenged his peers ( Booker. T. Washington and Marcus Garvey) and incessantly went against the grain to confront injustice in those oppressive and dreary places. Dubois made it his mission to fight for social and economic equality for blacks; demanding access to proper education and equivalent defense under the law. Even when the government scrutinized Dubois for his political views he never wavered in his beliefs. He remained steadfast in his fight to end racial issues and worked tirelessly towards world peace. That’s a bit of a history lesson on one of my favorite outspoken free thinkers.
Now, from my own observation of America in the twenty-first century, I can easily say a large majority of us are severely handicapped. We place ourselves at a great disadvantage by not taking advantage of certain privileges bestowed upon us from birth. People in other countries are sacrificing their lives and fighting for such rights. We’ve allowed ourselves to be “dumb down” by mainstream culture; we’ve become lazy and dependent on our government to think and act for us. By placing emphasis on the unnecessary, rather than what is needed in order for our country to thrive, America has become weak. We are no longer the respected power house we once were many years ago. The United States isn’t the blue print of an idealistic democratic progressive society. You may say that statement is un-American, but it’s true. You may not agree, but I embrace dissenting view points of others. In fact, I dare you to challenge that statement. In the words of W.E.B. Dubois “If there is anybody in this land who thoroughly believes the meek shall inherit the earth, they have not often let their presence be known.” Make your voice equivalent to the sound of a sonic boom; sending shock waves throughout all who become affected by its presence.
This month’s theme is all about the first amendment, free thought, and freedom of speech. We’ve selected a few poems from artist whose poetry embraces the spirit of the first amendment and the right to peaceably assemble. First up is our featured poet Sean Burton who submitted The Great American Boy, an ode to Mohammad Ali when he refused to go to war in Vietnam. Next is Wake Up a poem by K.S. Pratt dedicated to America and my frustration with the current state of affairs. Last but not least we introduce you to author, social activist, and founder of Activist Poet Round Table Steve Bloom. We selected Warriors a tribute to the strikers of Stella D’oro Bakery, and Statement of Context a short verse on the inhumane treatment of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
The Great American Boy
The stage was set for a man to take his solemn duty within his hands and make his way to far away lands. Yet today this boy became that man. Not the man wanting to venture unwillingly to far away lands. Nor the man to take the wishes of others’ ignorance into his own hands … but the man to keep to his morals … to make his stand. But as his higher power served greatly , admired by few yet hated by many. For the man he is now has been labeled a criminal. A coward of will. His legal duty duped by his moral appeal, he stands before the masses chanting in tongues giving lashes. The camera turns on and the lights heat up as it’s his time to confide his thoughts to the world in rhyme.
” You know who I am, yet you seem surprised lately. Am I still not the one to dance all night? Am I not the man that came to fight? No, I will not fight … not for the own selfish ignorance’s of those who can only experience what pain is like from the side, despite their own desires and virtues, they send the poor and hide in fright.
I am not a puppet of the man who thinks because I obey the law set that I will follow my brothers blindly into that darkened hell to gamble my being and talent simply for your will. No, I am not that pawn. I will not be pressured nor convinced ; I will go on! Do what you will with my name.
Take my titles and destroy my fame, but you will never break my spirit and you cannot throw me off my game. I will come back stronger and I will be back fast. I’m bigger than this and I will take this moment and throw it in my past. For I am the greatest, and nothing can stop me. I’ll still float gracefully across that canvas mat, and I will sting harder than ever when I get back. Send me to jail, there’s light at the end. For what’s broken can always mend”
The boy has now become a man of the hour, the solid statue of standing firm for belief and value. An endless figure sealed within our history in stone,
How long will you be
Content with fine cars and
fancy homes and think that you are free?
Your freedom cannot be measured in material things.
How long will you look at what you have and
Think that you are free?
The slave drums of the past beat for you.
The forests through which you run are the concrete jungles
Streets of the city.
Can you hear the rhythmic drums beating?
Can you hear our ancestors calling out for us to wake up?
Oh my people!
Listen to the drums and know that you’ve been lulled.
You cannot be free because you are blind.
And so you’ll never know
That the jungle drums beat for you.
And so they cry out
“Wake up, Wake up.”
Open your eyes and see!
While you blindly sing and dance,
The chains of oppression have been tightened.
Tightened by the past.
Tightened by the present.
Tightened by the future.
How could you let freedom escape you?
How could you allow generations yet unborn
To suffer the untold misery of the chains?
It is time for us to wake up!
You’ve let the concrete jungle
Lure you into a state of complacency.
It is time to stop the music!
Dance no more!
My people! My People!
Wake up! Wake up!
–by K.S. Pratt
You dwarf the words of the poet: you,
the warriors of Stella D’Oro.
For the best I might ever do
is recount this story which your deeds
have already written.
The end, it seems, was composed by others—
who have more power but less humanity.
A toast, therefore, to all still holding
heads high, proud of their humanity.
For this is the common cause any poet
might share with those who fight
Each one of you will always have
your humanity: the many-thousand acts,
small and large, of sacrifice and sharing,
the comradeship, the sheer magnitude of what
you have achieved.
Not one crossed the picket line. No,
For these things can never be taken away
no matter how much equipment
is dismantled, moved to another state—
just as the poet will always
have the written word, even if
our world might not be ready yet
It seems you spoke too soon, you
the warriors of Stella D’Oro,
before our world was ready to listen.
Still, I refuse to lose heart, assert
that one day the bosses and billionaires
will spend a little time of their own
on the unemployment line—after
the working people of New York City
have taken control.
And then we will turn that old building
in the Bronx (you know, the one that used to be
the Stella D’Oro bakery) into a must-see
destination, marked on every
tourist map, a shrine which pilgrims
can visit in their millions to learn,
remember, offer a tribute
to your struggle—writing, thereby,
an alternative ending to the story
of Stella D’Oro.
And the poem that you have composed for us
during this strike year of 2008/2009 will touch
their hearts as each one listens to its words—
overflowing with your humanity, the many-thousand
acts of sacrifice and sharing, the comradeship,
the sheer magnitude of what one,
work-place was able to achieve
and finally understand.
Yes, each one of them will,
Statement of Context
“Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter
has said the Palestinian people
trapped in Gaza are being treated
He is wrong, of course.
If you treated your animals this way
someone would come
to put you in jail.
© 2013 Seven Magazine